What I wish I'd known: Forget firm size - the quality of service you deliver is dependent on the quality of your team
Growing up in the west of Ireland in the 1970s and 80s, it was easy to feel that size was the determinative factor in success.
This was an era when Galway football seemed destined to never again win the Sam Maguire and a time when economic opportunity, such as there was, seemed to flow towards Dublin -particularly in the legal profession. This view may have informed some of my early career management decisions. Some business opportunities were not pursued due to a sense that our offering was not big enough to compete with some of the larger players in the legal market.
Experience has taught me that having a lean and agile business offering can actually be an advantage. This is not to say that size does not matter - of course it does. It is a necessary prerequisite that a law firm has critical mass and appropriate resources to service a client's needs. However, the key factor is quality. This is a results-driven business and the quality of the service we deliver to our clients is dependent on the quality of our team members. This fundamental principle has informed our strategy over many years. We have found that it is easier to ensure uniformity of quality across our business by adopting a careful approach to growth. Whilst sustainable growth is important - LK Shields has grown to a team of 120 people - ensuring we have top-quality performers at every level allows us to thrive in a very competitive market.
The provision of high-quality legal services in a constantly evolving world requires a willingness to change. We challenge ourselves to explore new ideas and seek improved ways to serve our clients' needs and deliver the best possible advice.
Surrounding yourself with a winning team makes this task much easier. Focusing on quality and client service means we no longer feel overawed by larger competitors.
Developing personal relationships, establishing trust and consistently exceeding expectations are the key tenets of our client service proposition. I have learned that this approach should always be front and centre of your business. Success cannot be achieved without having the best people around you or having people who commit to a culture of excellence.
Sunday Indo Business